We have now published our White Paper exploring the link between experiential diversity and innovation.

The paper covers a range of topics including:

  • What is experiential diversity?
  • Why it matters?
  • What can we do to increase innovation?

It also includes new content relating to the changes in recent times that have seen an increase in in 'adjacent innovations', sometimes known as recombinant innovation, which has a strong link to the cross-pollination that comes about when people with experiential diversity work together.

We also look at the stories behind some of the game-changing innovations, enabled by diversity, where great ideas have been turned into sustainable value. Some of the stories we tell are:

  • Garret Morgan - a serial inventor and the son of a slave with ten siblings, who left school and opened his own sewing machine sales, manufacture, and repair shop at the age of 30 years. He went on to design and patent the first manually operated traffic light.
  • Lynn Conway - who, following transition, went on to develop innovative methods and tools for designing complex integrated circuits, at scale. This technology breakthrough enabled the development, design and manufacture of much smaller semiconductor chips which underpinned future developments including smartphones, tablets, and AI implementation of deep learning architectures.
  • Marian Croak - whose career started in human factors, looking at the interaction between people’s lives and technology, followed by stepping into the field of digital transmission of voice, data, and video at AT&T Labs. She and her team made the case to use the TCP/IP protocol for network-based transmission, the birth of internet telephony. Marian then went on to patent the 'donate-by-text' technology used to support charity fundraising. She became Vice President of Engineering at Google in 2014.
  • Spencer Silver and Art Fry - whose paths crossing led to the serendipitous development of the Post-It Note. Albeit the path to success, including its iconic yellow colour, owed much to chance.

We also look at why these people's contributions were not enough on their own - the reality was that each of the above innovation journeys needed people with different experiences at different times along the journey.

This publication follows our recent IC Innovation Club webinar (you can download the presentation deck here) and our latest podcast - available on all platforms - published as part of our Talking Innovation series.